Fall Sports Update

Previewing fall sports

Previewing fall sports

FOOTBALL

Despite tailing Central Connecticut State University by twelve points midway through the first half of the first home game, the Big Green walked off Memorial Field victorious with a 35-25 win. The football team will compete against its first Ivy League challenger, the University of Pennsylvania, on October 4 in Hanover. Finishing at third place within the Ivy League last fall behind Harvard and Princeton, the Big Green aims to improve its league standing under guidance of head coach Buddy Teevens ‘79. This weekend, the team traveled across state to Durham to rival the University of New Hampshire Wildcats. Known as the “Granite Bowl”, this UNH-Dartmouth rivalry spans over a century. Unfortunately, the Dartmouth men lost 52-19, as the University of New Hampshire claimed its third consecutive victory over the Big Green.

SOCCER

The men’s soccer team will also challenge its first Ivy League opponent on October 4 when they travel to Princeton. Despite beginning the season with two losses, the Big Green currently carries a 2-2-1 record following a 2-2 tie versus Holy Cross on September 24. After a disappointing last-place league finish in 2013, the soccer team will use its recent wins against Hofstra and the University of Massachusetts Lowell as momentum, as players prepare for a series of Ivy League competitors in the coming weeks.

Following three consecutive wins in recent weeks, women’s soccer tied Brown at home on September 28. Recent wins against St. John’s, Northeastern, and Vermont boosted the women’s record to 3-2-2. Placing fourth in the 2013 league standings, the Big Green will rely on experienced senior leadership and a talented freshman class to improve its 2014 record. The Class of 2018 has proven ready to make waves this fall, as the new class has contributed a number of goals and assists in recent matches.

CROSS COUNTRY

Beginning the season on a high note, both the men’s and women’s cross country teams triumphed at the annual Dartmouth Invitational in Hanover, each team earning first place. Undeterred by the graduation of an especially accomplished class including Will Geoghegan ‘14 and John Bleday ‘14, the men’s team was led by Curtis King ‘16 and Silas Talbot ‘15. In a similar manner, King and Talbot led the Big Green to a fifth-place finish at the Boston College Coast-to-Coast invitational meet that took place in Franklin Park this past weekend. Now chieftain of an especially large class of ‘18 runners, head coach Barry Harwick ‘77 will employ his twenty-two years of experience in an attempt to repeat the success of past seasons.

In the absence of national champion Abbey D’Agostino ‘14, the women’s team has been consistently led by frontrunners Dana Giordano ‘16 and Sarah B. DeLozier ‘15. Victory appeared easy for the women at the Dartmouth Invitational as Giordano claimed the individual title. Dartmouth’s women placed fifth as a team in Boston this past weekend behind Division 1 powerhouses such as the University of Michigan and Syracuse. Freshmen Ellie Gonzales and Leigh Moffett positioned themselves within the Big Green’s top five. As they aim to claim their second consecutive Ivy League title this November, prospects look bright for the women’s team.

GOLF

The men’s golf team maintains a perfect record after the first two invitationals. Led by Scott Jaster ‘17, the Big Green placed first at the Bucknell Invitational in Pennsylvania. Jaster also led the Dartmouth men to a victory at Cornell’s invitational, a win that was determined by a single stroke.

Securing third place behind Boston University and Boston College, the women’s golf team performed well at the Dartmouth Invitational, with Jane Lee ‘15 as top performer for the Big Green. Also third place at the Chesapeake Bay Invitational, Jamie Susanin ‘16 shot the lowest score of Dartmouth’s women.

VOLLEYBALL

Currently holding an impressive fall record of 10-2, the volleyball team is well on its way to improving on its previous record of 11-15. Posting a 3-1 win versus Harvard last weekend, the team has only played one intraleague match. Dartmouth’s women will compete against Brown and Yale over the coming week, both games taking place at home in Hanover. Currently, the Big Green holds the highest winning percentage in the Ivy League. Paige Caridi ‘16 and Emily Astaria ‘16 have performed well this season, as both were named to the Seton Hall and Greyhound Challenge all-tournament teams.

FIELD HOCKEY

Returning from an unfortunate five-game losing streak, the field hockey team triumphed in its two most recent matches. Currently holding a record of 2-5,Dartmouth’s women hope to continue this trend in games ahead. Perhaps the most notable moment for the team this season was the 6-1 win versus Brown at home on Saturday, September 28. Ali Savage ‘15 was undoubtedly the team’s MVP for the game, as the senior scored five goals within the first half. Sunday also proved to be an exciting day for the Big Green, as the team racked up a 3-2 overtime win against Bryant University. This weekend will feature a home match with 1-7 Yale.

RUGBY

Coming off its seventh straight Ivy League Championship win last year, the Dartmouth Rugby Football Club (DRFC) is looking ahead to another successful season this year. Off the field, the team is lead by Head Coach Hickie, who has been at the program’s helm for the last three years.  On the field, captain Madison Hughes offers leadership in the form of unrivaled in-game awareness and skill. The Review had the privilege of speaking with starter Jack Braun, and although recently sidelined by an ACL injury, he could not be more optimistic about the team’s future and his own.

“If there were doubts coming out of the preseason, our rout of Cornell should have laid them to rest. We are a very talented team with a lot of depth and if we continue to improve and play Dartmouth rugby, regardless of the competition, I am confident that we will win the Ivy League.”

Although Braun believes the team’s prospects are sanguine, there is no avoiding the challenge of staying healthy. Besides Braun, players like Chris Banks and Eric Warnquist are also dealing with injuries that have left them wearing tight-fitting sweater vests and carrying clipboards at their sides during games. Rugby injuries can be crippling, but with so much at stake they do little to dull the player’s competitive and team spirit.

“While the recovery has been a bit longer than I would have hoped, it hasn’t deterred my hope to play again. I have enjoyed watching new players step up…and will continue to pass down what I know where I can to help out the new guys and support the team,” Braun says.

Hardwork, grit, and the DRFC’s winning traditions make up the cornerstone of the rugby program, and help to explain why Dartmouth has been so successful the last few years. Rugby player Andrew Zhu summed up this attitude best when he told the Review, “Since we only have one chance at every Ivy League team, we have to treat every game like it’s the championship.”

With this mindset firmly embedded into the psyche of every player on the pitch, it is no wonder that nothing seems to faze Dartmouth’s ruggers. With many new players being asked to fill in and take on larger roles on the field, there is no denying that this season may be tougher than those of past years. Nevertheless, it seems that it will take more than a few injuries to end a reign that has inspired fear in opponents for just shy of a decade.

John L. Beneville contributed to this report.